Imagine that Israel never existed. Would the economic malaise and political repression that drive angry young men to become suicide bombers vanish? Would the Palestinians have an independent state? Would the United States, freed of its burdensome ally, suddenly find itself beloved throughout the Muslim world? Wishful thinking. Far from creating tensions, Israel actually contains more antagonisms than it causes.
Thus opens A World Without Israel, an article by Josef Joffe in the latest edition of Foreign Policy. The author dismisses the widespread notion that Israel is the root of all evil in the Middle East and points out some basic facts about the sad state of the Arab world: lack of freedom, widespread illiteracy and low participation of women in politics and economics. As Joffe puts it: “Israel is just a strip of land in the world’s most noxious neighborhood, and the cleanup hasn’t even begun”.
The full article is here.